Punker Notes [Original Novel]
Part Two: Road Trip
“Hey man...,” Jenkins comes laughing down the hallway from the back bedroom–his grandmother’s–to the front bedroom where Frank and me are hanging out. “Check these out!”
He’s wearing a pair of light-blue boxer shorts over his black jeans. He points to his crotch where on the front of the underwear is an image of a young woman covering her bald beaver. A Native American runs away from her laughing with a tomahawk in his right hand, and what is obviously the girl’s minge in his left. He’s captioned to be proclaiming, “Me scalp ‘em!”
“Fuck...!” Frank stares at the depiction. “Pawpaw was fuckin’ rad.”
Jenkins sits down on the bed, picks up the guitar, strums it, stumbles through a chord progression barely reminiscent of the Stooges.
“Man..., we gotta start makin’ some noise... Rock these fuckin’ hillbillies,” Jenkins starts up.
“Yeah..., but there’s gotta be a scene in New Orleans already,” I come back. “Not like we’d be givin’ ‘em somethin’ they never heard before... Gotta be more than just that tourist jazz shit here.”
“Fuck...! Bullshit...!” Jenkins stops playing for a second. “Give ‘em a taste uh California raunch n roll.”
Frank picks up a plastic trash bucket, turns it over and starts pounding a steady booming beat on its bottom with his hands. “Bet they don’t know shit about L.A. and Orange County punk here.”
“Shit..., but what we gonna play with...? All we got is this,” Jenkins nods to the acoustic in his lap.
“Put a pickup in that thing an it’ll be fuckin’ noise-city, sound fuckin’ rad,” I suggest.
“Yeah, but where we gonna get money for a pickup? Or an amp?” Jenkins argues.
“I don’t know..., but we could just plug in ta yer grandma’s stereo for now. It’s one uh them old ones with tubes... We could make it into a tube amp... Damn thing’s ‘bout as big as the living room.”
“Yeah..., huh! She’d shit a brick. That’d be fuckin’ cool!”
Jenkins starts hashing out a rhythm on the beat-up acoustic. He’s barely keeping time, but he’s keeping it nonetheless... All down-strokes... Frank stops playing, walks out of the bedroom and returns seconds later with two wooden spoons. He starts in again adjusting his beat to syncopate with Jenkins rhythm then starts pounding as hard as he can on the bottom of the trash bucket. They keep playing the same thing over and over until it grooves. I start doing a Mick Jagger circa ‘69 Jumpin’ Jack Flash kinda shimmy.
“Dude..., sing somethin’,” Jenkins looks at me.
“Just somethin’... I don’t know... Just start skit-skattin’ bebopalula baby... Anything.”
“Ahhh..., mmmm..., I’m out here yeah...,” I start, not having a clue where this lyric is heading. “Lookin’ for somethin’ yeah... Goin’ to yo no-oth... Goin’ to yo south... Rifle through yo drawers... Know what I mean...? Lookin’ for some uh yo... Longin’ for some uh yo... Uhh...! Yeah...! Sweet... Sweet, sweaty... Uhh...! Jungle rot...!” I’m growling along feeling like I’ve stumbled in the right direction. “I’m lookin’ for somethin’ filthy..., somethin’ rank and juicy. Ahh yeah..., sweet... Soggy jungle rot...! Ya sure know what I talk about... Yo nasty mmm...”
“Fuckin’ sing it!” Frank yells.
“Rancid jungle rot...!" I scream. "Honey put that gash in mah face...! Slurp up every last bit uh yo’ mmmm..., tasty..., nasty jungle rot...! Sweetie put that thing to mah mouth and I’ll clean it all out that tasty... Noxious jungle rot...!”
Frank and Jenkins keep playing and I keep belching out the lyrics low and angry. I improvise a little, but pretty much keep singing the same shit over and over again. Then Frank covered in sweat stops abruptly and we all stop.
“Shit...! Frank exclaims. “That was cool...! Like the Cramps meet ahh...,” he searches.
“Meet ahh...,” Jenkins jumps in, “some fuckin’ mongoloid retards that don’t know what the fuck there doin’.”
“Yeah...,” I crack up, “pretty much.”
“Fuck dude..., whered’ya get that jungle rot shit. Fuckin rad,” Frank asks.
“Fuck..., I don’t know. It just popped inta my head.”
“Maybe the devil put it there!” Jenkins erupts.
Photo by CirrosisAguda